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Rey Maualuga vows to improve after being called “extremely average”

Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer was candid in his assessment of linebacker Rey Maualuga’s 2010 season.

“He sure has to play a hell of a lot better than he did this year because he was extremely average,” Zimmer told recently.  “He’s undisciplined.”

Maualuga, for his part, sees where Zimmer was coming from.

“I think this organization expected a lot out of me when I first stepped foot in this place,” Maualuga told Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “Then again I expected a lot out of myself as well. . . . I’m not satisfied with how I performed.”

Maualuga was just one part of a sluggish Bengals defense that dropped off dramatically from a strong 2009 season despite most personnel returning.  Zimmer said he got away from his core principles and tried to do too much as a coordinator.   Maualuga, who may transition to middle linebacker next season, knows it’s time to live up to expectations.

“Now is my time to step it up and prove people wrong. I can’t be some random dude walking around the locker rooms anymore,” Maualuga said.

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20 Responses to “Rey Maualuga vows to improve after being called “extremely average””
  1. CKL says: Mar 6, 2011 3:37 PM

    While I’m not a huge fan of public critique of players by coaching staffs and FO people (and vice versa), I respect Zimmer and hope that he may have told Rey this ahead of time or knows that this is the best way to motivate Rey. It’s Parcells-ish which makes sense given Zimmer’s history with Parcells.

    That said, I have been impressed with Rey stepping up to the plate and handling this criticism and his drunk driving offenses with TRUE public accountability. No whining, no excuse making…taking it like a man. If he backs this up with actual change he and NOT VICK may be a REAL example of a guy “getting it”.

  2. mikebrownmakesmefrown says: Mar 6, 2011 3:39 PM

    Who dey!

  3. superbengalfan says: Mar 6, 2011 3:41 PM

    Maualuga vowed last offseason that he was going to be a different player this past offseason. He admitted he didn’t take film study serious enough and was going to be more devoted.

    I’m not buying it from Rey, he was called out by his coach and he responded verbally that he was going to be different, big deal, his words didn’t amount to anything last year.

    I think coaches/GM’s get to caught up with pedigree and don’t always play the best player. Roddick Muckelroy was drafted from Texas last year and was praised for his leadership, intelligence and high devotion to being prepared mentally. He was proved so good he was used on goal line stands because of his uncanny ability to stuff the ball carrier, which he did several times.

    I don’t care if he was a 5th round draft pick, if he’s the best guy, make him the middle linebacker. You need a guy that is highly intelligent to call the defense and I don’t think Rey is up to it. He proved it last year if he can’t even play his own position with discipline, how is he going to get guys in place for the whole defense?

  4. jimmybrock says: Mar 6, 2011 3:59 PM

    “Extremely average”?

    That would be a major upgrade for the Bengals as a whole.

  5. chocopoppy says: Mar 6, 2011 5:03 PM

    Not buying it either. This was the guy’s rep coming out of USC. A leopard doesn’t change his spots…..or something.

  6. zackd2 says: Mar 6, 2011 5:07 PM

    “He proved it last year if he can’t even play his own position with discipline, how is he going to get guys in place for the whole defense?”

    Yeah, one year performance PROVES it.

  7. ppie12 says: Mar 6, 2011 5:14 PM

    lmao. Rey, and everyone on Cincy’s roster.

  8. commentcentral says: Mar 6, 2011 5:26 PM

    Cut the guy some slack. With other teams turning picks into six, he hardly had the chance to get on the field to practice his craft.

  9. EJ says: Mar 6, 2011 5:37 PM

    I can’t be some random dude walking around the locker rooms anymore,” Maualuga said.

    Is it me, or does that sound a little creepy?

  10. laxer37 says: Mar 6, 2011 5:44 PM


    You mean the guy that got drunk, ran over parking meters and hit two parked cars with two high school girls in his car?

  11. smootysmoot says: Mar 6, 2011 6:34 PM

    Hell, that is a compliment to anyone on this team. Almost all the players on this team r below average and that shouldn’t be surprising coming from a below average Franchise. Who-Dey = How-Gay

  12. 8man says: Mar 6, 2011 6:34 PM

    I once made the same vow at age 17 after a rather quick dalliance with a female party goer.

  13. riverhorsey says: Mar 6, 2011 7:04 PM

    the coach maybe should of said that halfway through last year

  14. thefiesty1 says: Mar 6, 2011 7:21 PM

    You think that maybe Zimmer and the whole Cincy coaching staff are “extremely average”.

  15. richm2256 says: Mar 6, 2011 7:21 PM

    “I’m not satisfied with how I performed.”

    Ummmm ….. yeah. I didn’t see you giving back any checks, though.

  16. goldsteel says: Mar 6, 2011 7:46 PM

    It sounds good. Him wanting to improve his game and moving into the middle linebacker spot which is his natural position anyway. Undisciplined is correctable with study and practice.


  17. frankdatank23 says: Mar 6, 2011 8:56 PM

    this guy is the next channing crowder…..

  18. southridge23 says: Mar 6, 2011 9:14 PM

    Who’s Rey Mamula?

  19. lucky5927 says: Mar 6, 2011 9:35 PM

    Hey I got an idea.. play the Middle linebacker at his natural position (instead of Outside Linebacker) and watch him make less mistakes. Rey was a sideline to sideline Linebacker, but that doesn’t not mean he has the lateral quickness to handle being an outside linebacker. I think Zimmer needs to accept some of the blame here. Instead of trying to get your three best linebackers on the field by forcing a MLB to the outside, sign or draft another OLB. Then Let Rey and Dhani battle it out for the middle.

  20. rojones82 says: Mar 7, 2011 4:27 AM

    I think McKelroy is going to get more of a shot at MLB, he was impressive in his limited opportunities last season, And Marvin has said he needs to get the young guys out there more often so now’s his chance.

    As for Rey he didn’t have a great season but he just needs to study harder he will be okay.

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